What to know about buying, using fireworks

A supporter of Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi looks on as fireworks light the SKY as they celebrate his inauguration while holding a rally in front of the presidential palace in Cairo, Egypt. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP/WISH) — It’s that time of the year again when the Indiana State Fire Marshal’s office reminds consumers to purchase fireworks only from licensed vendors.

The office says fireworks vendors must be licensed to sell fireworks in Indiana and have a permit from the Indiana Department of Homeland Security’s Fire and Building Safety Division.

Fireworks vendor permits must be displayed on the wall in the stores. The office says if you don’t see one, ask an employee to see it. If the permit can’t be produced, it asks you to call the State Fire Marshal at 317-232-2222.

Consumers should also remember that only those at least 18 and older can buy fireworks. Without a special permit, it’s legal to buy only 1.4G consumer fireworks such as bottle rockets and firecrackers.

Fireworks safety

Safety is also important to keep in mind when working with fireworks. The Consumer Product Safety Commission did a study in 2012 and found the following information:

  • About 200 people per day visit hospital emergency rooms for injuries related to fireworks in the month surrounding July 4.
  • 41 percent of fireworks injuries are to the hands and fingers, while 31 percent are to the eyes, head, face or ears.
  • 23 percent of fireworks injuries are from firecrackers, while 12 percent are from sparklers.

The CPSC has the following tips for people using fireworks:

  • Don’t allow children to use fireworks.
  • Do not try to re-light or pick up fireworks that did not properly ignite.
  • Keep a bucket of water or a hose nearby while lighting off fireworks.
  • Light fireworks one at a time and move back quickly after lighting them.

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